Hi, I’m Equinox, the tank player for Gale Force eSports and this is my guide to Diablo. Diablo is a very old hero but with recent buffs he’s became a pretty terrifying part of the meta. The buffs he received put him as the best tank right now in my opinion. There’s not really a situation he’s bad in and he compliments a majority of the meta heroes' strengths right now.
High CC potential, especially off of walls. Highest CC power spikes are at 16 and 20.
Strong area control via Apocalypse, his ability to flip/charge targets off of points, and the wall stun capability.
A very high, effective HP pool, his resistance on charge + spell damage reduction at 7 make him an extremely hard tank to bust through when he’s collected enough souls.
- Strong damage output post-13.
Extremely soul reliant, especially early on in the game.
- Very easily body-blocked once his CC is down, similar to Stitches or Azmodan.
Level 1 - On this tree it’s choosing between Bulwark and Devil’s Due. On rotation maps (Dragon Shire, Tomb, and to some extent, Infernal Shrines) I recommend Devil’s Due because of how often you’ll be picking up globes and getting value off of it. Bulwark just guarantees you strong value vs everyone, 4 seconds on a 25% damage reduction that you can refresh post 16 is hard to pass up. Overall I think Bulwark is the stronger talent.
Level 4 - From the Shadows is the best on this tree, an extra .5 seconds on your wall stuns and a much larger engage range makes you a bigger threat than you already were especially on maps like infernal shrines with a lot of walls. It also has an alternate use of getting out using the massive charge range on minions or other heroes.
Level 7 - Soul Shield and Diabolical Momentum are my go to’s on this tree, against a magic damage line-up (li-ming, jaina, gul’dan, any hero that does a good amount of AP damage) you’ll want to go Soul Shield 100% of the time, even if it’s hybrid damage (half physical half magic) you’ll want Soul Shield just to mitigate as much as possible. If you’re against majority or all physical damage comps then go Momentum, it’ll drastically increase your CC potential and make it so your stuns can’t be tracked as easily.
Level 10 - Apocalypse is just too good to pass up right now. You can combo it off of your wall stun, earthquake, a kerrigan combo, malf root, void prison, and lots of other CC’s. While lightning breath does give you great area control and CC follow up there’s not really a lack of damage in the current meta, so having a large upper hand in CC makes their damage dealers a lot more pressured than yours.
Level 13 - Fire Devil and Devastating charge are the best on this tree, if you’re on a map with a lot of walls (haunted mines, infernal shrines, cursed hollow) you should take Devastating charge because you’ll get a lot of value out of it reliably, if there aren’t a lot of walls then just take Fire Devil. It’s extra damage and wave clear.
Level 16 - Domination and Fearful Presence are both extremely strong talents, one gives you more CC the other ruins every type of damage dealers day. I recommend Fearful Presence vs strong tank killing comps, anything with percent HP damage or a lot of burst. If it’s mostly sustained damage and some burst then just go with Domination, it ups your pick potential a lot.
Level 20 - Hellgate, the new change to his bolt of the storm adds..you guessed it even more CC. Down at the bottom of the guide I’ll show you the ways you can use this new bolt to chain CC’s.
Combos (Below will be GIF’s of numerous amounts of combos you can do
Standard Q-E-Q (post 16)
Bolt Q-E-Q (post 20)
Bolt Q-E-Q - Apoc (post 20)
Bolt - Q into Wall, E into the rune, Apoc, Wall stun again
- Apoc - Q - E (post 16)
- Apoc - Q - E - Bolt ontop of Apoc rune
Those are the combos you’ll most likely use, others can be situational such as double wall bang with Q-E-Q in the right corridor but most if not all of these can be used on a regular basis.
Now that you have the build and combos down, what is diablo supposed to do in the 3 stages of the game (early, mid, and late game)?
Simply, you’re just looking for picks and to give your team an exp advantage. When you pick diablo make sure your team knows you’re gonna roam, that’s what he’s best at and the strength you should be utlizing. Find the weak/overextended lanes early and pick them off, use the fog of war to keep people guessing and also manipulate vision by acting like you’re going bot then turn around out of vision and go gank top on say cursed hollow. Their last vision of you will be of you going bottom so when you show up top most players won’t expect it. Also early game looks at your comp, can anyone dive with you or does your comp kill frontline. If they kill frontline then CC the frontliner to death, if they dive then dive a backliner. It seems simple but most people only have one mode or the other, frontline or dive, it’s all based on comp on what your heroes can hit.
Note: Gather as many souls as humanly possible before level 10, you need them once teamfights start.
Post 10 just group with your team and look for picks/fights in small areas or boss pits, that’s where diablo fights best and where he has the most control of a situation. Same concept as early game, recognize what your team can hit and punish that person. If their tank is overextended and is in your face just flip him into your team and kill him. If a squishy is in your charge range and especially when he’s against a wall just combo him unless no one else can hit them, it’s all about what target people can reach cause if you’re going for a target no one can reach either you or your team is gonna die.
Note: Don’t lose your souls unless it’s required to keep everyone from dying, like peeling people off and sacrificing your life instead of others (only do this if multiple people will die instead of you.
Post 20 is when late game basically is, it’s when death timers are long and the game can end for either side at any moment. Look for those picks, 1 pick late game can basically end a game just from the advantage on the map you gain alone. Stay with your team and abuse fog of war (same as early and mid game) but it’s way more important that you don’t go for targets other can’t hit, in the late game it’s all about making the right decisions. One bad engage or wrong decision can result in a loss. However now that you’re 20 getting picks is much easier using bolt-q-e-q or any of the other combos with bolt that I listed. When you do go for these picks make sure your team is with you otherwise it could just result in your death, also avoid fighting in open areas unless it’s an advantageous fight for your team. I say this because again diablo fights in choke points and boss pits a lot better than he does in open areas.
Last but not least heroes that counter/do well vs diablo and heroes that compliment Diablo.
Heroes that counter diablo
Tychus, Xul, E.T.C, Tyrael, Leoric, Artanis. All of these heroics have either extremely good percent HP damage, strong disruption via knock backs, stuns or swaps, or an AoE invulnerability.
Heroes that compliment Diablo.
Thrall, Malfurion, Kerrigan, Zagara (Maw), Zeratul, Tyrande, Jaina, Dehaka, Ragnaros, and Rehgar. All of these heroes either are a set up to Diablo, follow up his CC, or enable him to pick targets easier via move speed, slows, or other forms of CC.
When someone picks Diablo on your team, you should look to draft heroes that go well with him but also round out your composition well so don’t take this list as you must pick them. They’re just very good with the hero, but make sure the hero you pick fits into your comp well first.
Thank you for reading my guide, I hope this gives you some insight on how Diablo works and what you can do to maximize his potential.